Tauohu pleaded not guilty to 33 counts of false pretense contrary to section 308 (a) of the Penal Code [Cap. 26] and one account of Unlicensed Financial Institution prohibited contrary to section 3(2) (a) of the Financial Institution Act 1998.
He is yet to enter his plea to another five counts of false pretence in relation to the complaint of one of the scheme’s mentors.
Deputy Chief Magistrate Ricky Iomea was about to arraign him on those charges when he notices that particulars of the charges do not contain the sum of money Tauohu allegedly obtained.
He said the charges were poorly drafted and adjourned the matter to July 10 to allow the prosecution to go through the five charges.
The charges that he pleaded not guilty to yesterday relates to the complaints from four mentors of the scheme.
Tauohu allegedly obtained more than 400,000 from the four mentors between December 2019 and February 2020 but allegedly failed to pay them their interests.
He then allegedly escaped to Malaita and was arrested after police received complaints from the scheme’s mentors and customers who had invested in the scheme last year but are yet to receive their payments.
One link Pacifica customers had allegedly invested a total of $56,440, 4575 in the scheme but police had only managed to recover $336,891.20.
Public Prosecutor Nickson Tonowane who appeared on instructions of his colleague Jonathan Auga said their office is yet to receive another 16 files containing complaints against Tauohu.
Iomea having adjourned the matter also ordered the prosecution to confirm on the next date if other charges are filed.
Rodgers Tovosia of DNS & Partners law firm represents Tauohu.
By ASSUMPTA BUCHANAN